Sunday, November 21, 2004

A Fixed Fix or Trouble Brewing or Caffeine Conspiracy or...

ConspiratorI’m usually not one to buy into outlandish conspiracy theories, but I’m convinced that there is an organized movement hell-bent on subtly wreaking havoc in the workplace. They do this by attacking a pillar of workplace productivity – the office coffee. It’s not blatant – and that’s exactly why it works.

I’m not talking about Starbucks secretly paying off corporations to serve bad coffee so employees are forced to get a double-shot-vente-nonfat-carmel-macchiato – we all know that to be true. What I am talking about is a more secret and subversive effort by condiment makers to attack cheap bastards like me who drink the rancid work coffee despite the best efforts of corrupt office managers.

double-shot-vente-nonfat-carmel-macchiatoIn order to save $80 a month (i.e. 20 double-shot-vente-nonfat-carmel-macchiatos at 4 bucks a pop), I instead spend a dollar a week on a pint of whole milk. This strategic investment helps make the work coffee marginally palatable. Without it, I would be left with only sugar and non-dairy creamer to try and erase the gastronomical foibles inherent with large-scale commercial roasting and inferior grade beans.

Of course, milk on its own is not enough – I also need sugar – and that is where the conspiracy begins. Industrial size sugar and non-dairy containers are identical in their cylinder-style shape, with the only difference being whether it happens to be red or blue. Sounds easy enough, as you can quickly associate the sugar with calming blue and the non-dairy creamer with warning red. However, the various sugar and non-dairy creamer conglomerates have nefariously plotted to produce their wares in conflicting colors.

Exhibit AIf you notice in exhibit ‘A,’ the inappropriately-named Coffee-‘Mate’ is red, while the N’Joy ‘creamer’ and Dixie sugar are both blue. Thus, if you’re not completely awake (which you aren’t – hence the coffee), you could easily grab the blue ‘creamer’ by mistake and ruin your coffee. And this is exactly what they want. The condiment conspirators win by you using up more product, and Starbucks wins by converting some of the weak-willed creamer victims. And I lose, because I’m the cheap bastard who should be drinking the $4 double-shot-vente-carmel macchiato.